Wraiths Kiss Meme

Spy Games

Every once in a while, missions were somewhat upper class. Rather than all warehouses, sewers and abandoned complexes, there was the occasional night where they were brushing elbows with the elite. Sometimes, it made Ash’s skin crawl, whichever one she was wearing at the time, how these people acted and flouted their bigotry like it was acceptable. Like tonight.

They were a team of four, Theo and her for the heavy hitters should it be needed, Megan to break into the computer systems and Jade to get them all out without being seen. The latter two were in the main office getting the data store downloaded to Megan’s device, while Theo and Ash kept watch outside on the main ball floor.

Given their lack of requirement for weapons, Theo cut a trim line in the excellent suit, clearly tailor made and expensive enough to fit in with these high society types. Ash just picked a slimline dress to match her current form, the soft peach dress complimenting her tanned skin tone. “We’ve got eyes on us.” The beauty of working with someone as astute as Theo was that they covered enough ground to keep an eye on things.

And true enough, two guards from the other side of the room were eyeing them up. “Kiss me.” It was a testament to how well they worked together, how professional they both were that Theo didn’t hesitate in dipping in close, since Ash’s form was just an inch or so shorter than him, his hand spreading over the small of her back to brace her as Ash wove her arms around his neck, stretching up to meet Theo in the kiss. They were professional enough to not let their situation phase them, and human enough to make it genuinely believable, although Ash had to remind herself keep her hands from pushing into Theo’s hair, messing anything up. They made a point of drawing it out, Theo nipping at her upper lip, Ash sighing into the gentle but insistent press.

When the attention shifted from them, Jade’s voice echoing in both their comms about finishing up, no one gave them a second look as Theo led her from the room, aside from the small smirk of a far too keen observer making their own observations.

Hunt and Seek

The little brain was panicking.

She could hear his heartbeat thumping in his chest from where she was, crouched in the woods, waiting out the hunt for them to make it to the rendezvous point. It wasn’t really part of the mission plan, and Ozzie was aware that they were now making things up as the went along -if she were honest, she’d began making things up the moment they’d triggered the alarm, but the only objective in her mind was getting the little genius back to Rachel in the plane so they could leave. But if he kept freaking out, they were going to die.

Grabbing his wrist, Ozzie tugged him along deeper into the brush, her hair contained in a tight band to allow them to blend in, go unnoticed. Mostly. Hearing the footfalls of their pursuers, Ozzie pushed Jeff into the ground, her hand covering his mouth to keep him quiet before hunkering down over him. She could practically feel his heart thumping now, but she couldn’t let him move, draw attention in their direction.

He was starting to squirm though, and Ozzie understood the biological response to run from danger, fight or flight rarely included stay still and quiet. But Ozzie knew how to hunt, and she knew how to hide, and this one called for hiding. Bracing her elbows in the dirt beside Jeff, she shifting her legs to straddle his waist, pressing her mouth to his firmly. It was partly to muffle his noises, partly to distract him, and she could feel the latter happening as his heartbeat remained steady but his squirming died down.

There was less of a frightened rabbit about him, more of a docile deer, and Ozzie kept half an ear out for the footfalls edging away from them while she enjoyed the growing attention from Jeff, hands growing a little more sure as they anchored on her waist.

The noise of an engine starting up pulled them apart, Ozzie peeking through the bushes again, “I will distract you more at base, little deer. We leave now.” They had a narrow window after all, and he’d be a shame to lose in the woods.

Cherry Lips

For the most part, Cole enjoyed Sandy’s company for the pure reason that he wasn’t always having to focus. His mental barriers kept him from sending out random thoughts unless he wanted to, and Sandy’s shield meant he didn’t need to even worry about her thoughts penetrating his head unless they consciously created a pathway.

They could just sit, in relative silence, and be in each other’s company.

And sometimes, it didn’t need to be silence.

Taking up some space in Sandy’s room, on the floor, Cole did have a book with him, but he wasn’t exactly reading it, since he’d gone over the last three paragraphs at least five times, while Sandy sat next to him, hunched over a book of her own that her handler had thought she’d like.

And Cole did want to read, but he kept just--- there was something he just kept noticing.

He’d long since been aware that Sandy was pretty. But there was just something catching his attention right then and he could not tell what it was. She hadn’t done her eye make up any different from usual, the ends of her hair were still a washed out pastel purple right then, and it wasn’t like she was wearing anything she hadn’t worn before.

And then it hit him.

She was biting her lips. Either in concentration or something else, she was just sitting there, nibbling on her lower lip, a slight sheen on her upper lip from running her tongue over it and Cole was finding it so damn hard to focus on anything else. “What?”

“What?”

“You’re staring.” And he was, most definitely, staring right at her mouth, and the blush that bloomed on his cheeks was more than likely telling on that matter too.

“No I wasn’t.” Sandy scoffed at his denial under her breath, and yeah, okay, so he couldn’t exactly lie about it, but whatever else he might’ve said was derailed when she wet her lips again, ready to argue back and, from nowhere, Cole leaned over the short distance and placed a gentle, quick kiss on her lips.

She was wearing lipbalm, cherry? Strawberry?

“Why did---” Sandy didn’t look mad, but she looked stunned, maybe not positive stunned.

“You were just--- I couldn’t really--- You’re very distracting.” Which was in no way a bad thing, but Sandy wasn’t saying anything back. “Can I… Can I kiss you again?” Because now that he knew what was distracting him, he was hoping maybe they could broach the subject, maybe after a little less tentative of a kiss.

Looping some hair behind her ear, Sandy gave a jerky nod, the books neither of them were paying much attention to just sitting there, as Cole closed the distance again, bringing a hand up to cup Sandy’s cheek, leaning in for a deeper, less chaste kiss. It was definitely cherry lipbalm.

When they parted, Cole stroked his thumb over her cheek, watching the way Sandy pressed her lips together and took a breath in. “Okay?” The nod was miniscule, like she didn’t want to break the moment or shake loose his hand, even as she scooted a little closer, one of her hands finding the curls at the nape of his neck.

“Can we just… a little…” She barely had to keep going before Cole was leaning toward her again, a small smile on his lips before they met hers.

Ice Age

Sienna could see her breath in front of her, she could feel her body chilling to it’s core as she huffed out little puffs of cold air, turning to a little cloud of freezing air in front of her. It’d be one thing if it was cold; winter was always nice, she like winter, the snow, the frost, the lure of hot gingerbread drinks with little peppermint candy canes in them for that little kick.

But it wasn’t winter, it was the middle of summer, and she wasn’t enjoying a brisk walk around the bay. She was in a freezer. An industrial freezer, locked inside, and slowly losing the feeling in her fingers and toes. “How long does it take hypothermia to kick in?” She supposed she should be glad that she wasn’t alone, but in some ways, that just meant someone else was suffering with her.

“Try not to think about it.” Psychosomatic, that was something she understood, but Sienna knew that it wasn’t just that. She couldn’t feel her fingertips, her toes were numb and it was edging up her appendages. Soon her legs and arms would be numb, if she was conscious to feel it.

“That’s easier said than done,” her teeth were starting to clatter, and she couldn’t clench her jaw enough to stop them.

“Come here,” she knew that Marius was likely feeling it too, he wasn’t in any more layers than she was, maybe he was just far better at pushing down his reactions, but Sienna didn’t argue as she managed to shuffle over, Marius’ arms spreading to encase her. Body heat, she figured that part out when his hands started rubbing at her back. And it felt a little better, a little easier to breath, but she wasn’t sure how long that would last, even as she wrapped her arms around Marius’ waist and attempted to hide her face in his neck, she could still feel the cold seeping into his body too. “We’ll keep each other warm, until help arrives.”

When help might arrive, Sienna had no idea, if it would arrive at all. Maybe they’d be too late and all that would be left would be a pair of frozen bodies. She shuddered a little, half from the cold, half from the thought itself.

Marius pressed his lips to her forehead, the warm touch cooling quickly and only leaving Sienna more worried, but she appreciated his attempt to comfort her.

Love Tap

Orla was sure people would just think she was drunk, which she wasn’t, or a little overly emotional, which she was, because of the occasion. It was unusual for weddings within the Regiment program, mostly because the government didn’t recognise Supers as people and therefore they weren’t granted the same graces as humans.

Such as getting married.

So while it wasn’t a wedding in the legal sense, it was still something the people at Limbo wanted to celebrate. Well, most of them anyway. Goldie and Carly were already entertaining the masses with their songs, someone had gotten Goldie a keyboard and they were ready to sing all night. The happy couple were already waltzing on the makeshift dance floor in the middle of the court and some people were already joining them, Orla watching with a dopey grin.

She’d found Bea about twenty minutes before, the pair of them swapping some pleasantries about the decor and the food. As two of the three empaths on base, it was almost natural to flock together during big events, but Asher was at the other end of the court with his brother, and Orla was feeling a little light headed anyway.

“Good party, isn’t it.” Getting Bea out of her shell was a slow going process, and even now, Bea was sticking to the outskirts. Orla could understand parts of it, given Bea’s history with one of the handlers and the presence of his family here. But progress was being made.

“It is,” Orla herself was loose and happy, the influx of emotions just soaking through her to the point where she felt like it was the ending of every Disney movie ever. She couldn’t keep in the giggle before her her head ended up on Bea’s shoulder, that dopey, lovey expression practically etched on. “It’s super, I feel super.” She felt drunk.

Bea just laughed lightly, pushing some of her hair behind her ear, brushing Orla’s forehead lightly. It was sudden and unexpected, as Orla watched her move her hair, but there wasn’t anything to really stop her. Sitting upright, twisting around, Orla pressed the kiss to Bea’s lips before either of them could properly react.

And the reaction was slow to come, Bea kissing her back at first, the pair of them sinking into all the emotions around them for just a minute, feeling light and happy and loved. Weddings were dangerous for empaths. Breaking away, staring at one another for a minute, Bea was the first to break the silence with a laugh, both very aware of what happened.

“Gosh, it’s just as well that Asher wasn’t sitting with us.”

Raving

He’s still not sure how he ended up in the club. He hates clubs, and the others could tell him how great they were until they turned blue, and he’d still hate clubs. But damn if it wasn’t Van’s birthday and she got to choose what they did for the night. He’d been fine up until the pizza, and then this followed?

The noise of the music was already pulsing in his chest, throbbing out of time with his heartbeat, and while it was definitely drowning out a lot of the noise in his head, it wasn’t with any kind of pattern or thread. Just noise. “I hate clubs.” He just muttered it to Wren, who gave a half shrug as she was tugged onto the dancefloor by Van and Stella, Alec and Lee already at the bar while Cole dragged his feet mopey and irritated.

“C’mon, you might enjoy it if you relax.” That was the usual advice, and while he never relaxed to the point of being able to actually relax, Cole was fairly sure that even if he did, he wouldn’t enjoy it. Little tidbits of thoughts kept sneaking in, around the music, and the pulsing of the music didn’t help anything. So he sat and nursed a beer while every girl in the place hit on Alec and Lee and the girls came and went for drinks every now and then.

“Come dance with me.” Stella and Van had come back to get hydrated, both of them looking like they’d just run a marathon, but Wren eternally had so much energy that she barely stopped, pulling Cole away from their snagged table without time for him to protest too much. It was probably better he was away from the table while Van was there, he didn’t need to be a total downer on her birthday.

“I don’t even know what the hell kind of dancing this is.” There was no real beat to dance to, nothing that gave him any clues on how to follow the music or move. Wren just draped her arms over his shoulders, getting him in close to her and moving with some rhythm, something that Cole just had to follow, hands on her waist. Could bounce a nickle off that ass. I can’t believe he’s just staring at her chest, what is wrong with him, am I invisible? God, this place is so lame, but I really need to get laid tonight. Fuck, those dimples, like a fucking cherub.

It’s weird, but Cole can always tell when thoughts are directed towards him. Enough that he startles a little bit when he hears it, almost looking for the source. Wren gives him a frown, so he shakes his head and tries to fall into the rhythm again -as if there is one.

Could just sink my teeth into that throat, fuck how is his neck so long? He’s worried he’s going to start blushing, because that one, distinct voice is hitting his head now and it’s like he needs to figure out where it’s coming from. Of course a glance around, Cole almost feels the jolt when his eyes land on someone, Shit he’s cute. And okay, Cole has heard it before -rarely out loud, he has a tendency to be brash and off putting to people who try to hit on him, but telepathically speaking? Yes, he is objectively attractive. But he’s not personable like Alec, who can be a jerk but is always stupidly charming, or Lee, who tends to just put people at ease.

And while it’s not the first time another male has found him attractive, it’s maybe one of a few times that Cole hasn’t just brushed it off. He keeps eye contact with the guy over Wren’s shoulder, smirking just a little as the other gives him a very slow once over as if Cole hadn’t already read his mind.

“Cute girl?” Wren leans up a little to ask in his ear, although she could think it and he’d catch it, he thinks she’s trying to be polite.

“Something like that.” Typically, Lee was the one with few discriminations in partners, Cole couldn’t really say that he’d been too inclined to experiment, but it wasn’t like he was running for the hills at the mere idea of another man finding him attractive, or making running mental comment on those traits he found attractive. If I could get those lips ar-- Cole nearly choked at the very imaginative stream of thoughts.

“From the way you just blushed I’d say it’s a lot more than that.” Glancing over Wren’s shoulder, intending on showing her, Cole noticed that he’d disappeared, maybe to the bar or someone else had just caught his attention, so nothing to really think about. At least until Wren’s smile turned devious and Cole felt an extra set of hands settle on his waist.

“Can I cut in?” The shiver was most definitely from the cool breath against his neck, even as Wren dragged her hands down his chest with a smile, telling him mentally to have fun before slinking into the crowd to find the others. “Hope I wasn’t interrupting?” It was truly impressive just how dirty a simple question could sound, but that might have something to do with the tiny flick of tongue against his ear as the question was asked and the directing hands that occasionally caused Cole to brush back against a hard and very warm body.

“No, not really.” Because Wren and him paired off sometimes, but never seriously, not since high school during a brief phase. Since it was a little weird to sort of talk while he had his back to the guy, Cole twisted a little in the hold, feeling a little bolder than usual to drop an arm over his shoulder, the other looping under to rest just shy of on his ass.

“I’m Simon.” He had a sharkish grin, all white teeth and a distinct predator vibe, but not in that sleazy way that would’ve had Cole smoking the guy with a mind haze. That, with the stupidly reflective blue eyes and cheekbones that even Cole was impressed by, they struck quite the alluring image.

“Cole.” He could’ve done the fake name, but they’re on vacation in New York and no one knows them, so why the hell not, especially when Simon just smirks and finds a way to get them even closer. Impossibly close, like he’s trying to have every inch of them touching.

He’s got a few inches on Simon, but that seems to work just fine, who has managed to tangle their legs so that he can almost control how Cole shifts with the music -the song has to have changed a few times by now, but Simon’s showing no signs of finding another else to dance with and Cole’s stopped feeling like the pulse of music is overriding his body. One hand had found its way under Cole’s shirt, fingertips trailing over his skin, Cole’s hand having curved around Simon’s nape, occasionally toying with the little tuft of hair at the back of his neck.

It’s really not surprising that Simon has to make the first move, even with the stream of thoughts, Cole’s not quite at the stage of jumping headfirst in. It’s warm lips on his jaw first, just where his jaw and throat join, a tiny hint of teeth and heat and Cole’s tipping towards it, eyes slipping shut. Simon gives a firmer nip along his jawline after that, the steady mantra still reaching through Cole’s head, and damn but Simon has a filthy mind.

Which really, Cole thinks, is what makes him twist his head a little, bending just slightly to catch Simon’s mouth with his. There’s a groan that echoes through Cole’s chest, both Simon’s hands gripping a little tighter and Cole leans into him, mouth opening at near gentle questing on Simon’s tongue, the kiss turning from hesitant to intentful in a heartbeat. Simon’s mouth is warm, it tastes faintly of vodka and Cole is very sure that all those little thoughts can definitely be backed up.

I want you under me. The thought gets a groan out of Cole just as much as the press of Simon’s crotch into his, testament that yeah, he was into guys. Or at least this one. “You wanna get out of here?” And there was a momentary jolt of guilt, for bailing on Van’s birthday, but a quick mental message to Wren told him quite squarely to have fun and he was exceptionally curious just where this would go.

“Yes.” And Simon’s grin was back, along with all kinds of ideas on just how to wreck him that meant Cole didn’t look back once as they left the club.

Temperature Rising

“Is it hot in here?” Crystal raised her eyebrow at Mike again, since that was the third time he’d asked that question.

“We’re in a greenhouse, Mr Winter. It’s warm, yes.” And it was warm, it was decidedly warm, like Florida humidity turned up to 90. She wasn’t sure what plants they were growing in here, but surely the didn’t need to live in a near furnace. She could feel the perspiration building, her hair was probably ridiculous.

Mike had already shed his jacket, his shirt was unbuttoned at the collar, the sleeves were rolled up and he looked like he was contemplating getting rid of his shoes and socks. Crystal, feeling just a little more dignified, had just started to fan herself with her clutch instead.

“Who makes a greenhouse impenetrable? Why would you need plants that can’t get telepathic messages out? Are the plants telepathic?” Which wasn’t exactly an absurd question. The metal encased, secure and blocked off greenhouse was just a little overkill, and Crystal’s inability to get a message outside of the room was definitely worth raising an eyebrow at. She hadn’t been in a non-government facility with this kind of technology ever.

“Not that I can tell, no.” But they just looked like plants, rather large and hideous plants with giant purple flora and disgustingly inappropriate stems hanging from them, but plants nonetheless. “But we were here to steal their documents, so perhaps they’re something. Empathic? Or just mind controlling, maybe they’re making it hot.” Which she was saying as a ludicrous thought, but Mike seemed to take her at her word.

To the point where he punched a flower.

Punched it. “For Heaven's sake.” She crossed over to Mike, to hit him or give him her clutch to cool down a little, she wasn’t sure, but she stopped short just as the purple plant coughed a dusting of pollen all over the handler, a few traces landing on Crystal’s dress. But Mike was covered, clumps of dusky purple dust all over his face and chest, sticking to his sweaty brow, catching on his throat, on the peek of his chest from the opening of his shirt.

“Well…” There wasn’t much else to say about that, and as Crystal waved her hand over herself to get some of the beads of pollen off her dress she could barely contain the chuckle. “That seemed like a good idea. I believe I was mistaken.”

Rolling her eyes, Crystal turned to return to the door, adamant that someone had to walk past soon, that Megan and Natasha would undoubtedly wonder what was taking them so long and come find them -Megan was a technopath for Gods sake, if anyone could get this damn door open it was her.

"I feel a little weird." Mike was still standing where he'd been coughed on, looking at his hands like they were foreign. Her telepathy was still working in the room, allowing her to check him over mentally to be sure nothing from the plant was trying to take over his mind. "Like... I'm still hot, but it's... It's a different kind?" Which didn't make sense, there still wasn't air in the room, if you could call the bunker a room, and it wasn't exactly much more than a tunnel with heating given the only doors were at either end and locked.

But Mike was looking a little flushed, under the dusting of purple, his cheeks red, eyes a little unfocused. She was a little more concerned now. "Are you in pain?" What if the pollen was toxic? "We should get this off you, there should be a hose or something around here for these stupid plants." They needed water, they could hose Mike off and make sure none of this had caused some kind of reaction with his skin.

"Crystal it's..." He trailed off, hand dropping to his side as if he were a puppet with his strings cut. "My chest feels... tingly." It was getting more worrisome, and she couldn't find a hose anywhere.

"Get your shirt off, c'mon, you have to get this off." Crystal tended to be respectful of clothes, but in this instant, ripping the buttons off Mike's shirt seemed far better than taking her time and possibly letting him have a heart attack right in front of her. "Jesus, you're burning up." And not just from the warm room, he was dangerously warm, and barely able to assist as she pulled the shirt off his shoulders and down his arms, tugging the rolled up sleeves off his wrists. Balling up the shirt, the pollen inside, she used a clean section to wipe the dust from his face, sweat smearing it over his forehead. His lack of reactions worried her as much as the heat coming off him.

"You're cool." She'd complain later, as Mike's head dropped forward to rest on her shoulder, getting some of that dust on her and her dress, but if it helped him feel cooler then she'd suck it up for now. Strangely, his heartbeat wasn't racing, quick maybe, but it wasn't racing like she'd expect from his raised temperature.

It seemed to help soothe Mike a little, his breathing hard against Crystal's shoulder, but his forehead cooling just slightly on her shoulder. She wondered mildly if she could turn herself diamond to further help him cool down. But then he turned his face into her neck, nose rubbing at her throat where he was stooped just slightly so that he could reach, "You smell nice," his voice was muffled against her skin, soft puffs of air on her neck making her lengthen her throat just a little.

"As lovely as this is," and his arms had wrapped around her waist, keeping them close, her hands resting on his shoulders even as he straightened up, gaining back those few inches on her, even with her heels. "I do think that we should maybe try to--" She was moderately surprised when Mike kissed her. Which was hard to do, surprise her, not kiss her. But his lips just pressed to hers, rather one sided for a brief moment before she forgot why she wasn't kissing him back. The second she opened her mouth to his, there was an explosion of taste across her tongue, and all she could associate it was was purple.

She began walking backwards, Mike directing them with an arm around her waist, the other reaching back to brace them as they hit the wall, the cold of the metal making Crystal arch with a gasp, just as Mike's mouth dipped to her throat, teeth dragging over her pulse point before he stopped to suck a mark at the base of her throat. Spearing her hand in the back of Mike's hair, body arching toward Mike as heat spread through her body, her chest tingling and she had to consciously stop herself from shifting her heart to diamond in case it exploded from the inside.

It was like a drug sinking into her blood, making her mind hazy and everything feel like an electric current, charged and tingling through her, except where Mike touched her. His lips were cool against her skin, his fingertips like soft trails of ice where they touched her, cooling through her like her only source of relief. And that thought alone had her pulling his head up, sealing her mouth back over his like she could try and swallow that feeling, to ease the heat burning inside her.

Barely aware of anything around her, Crystal didn’t even flinch when Mike scooted the straps of her dress over her shoulders, the fabric pooling around her waist, content sighs breaking free from the pair of them as the pressed chest to chest before the noises were drowned out in the others mouth all over again.

Inner Fears

He wasn't sure why he'd never really put much thought into what they'd be up against any time there was a mission; he'd assumed half the time it was using supers in a way that normal agents might not work. Like the FBI on super juice or something. He never honestly expected that the Government was going to send them into situations that sort of helped supers. But here they were, and it was a giant clusterfuck, and while Cole was resolutely glad that Crystal had helped him build stronger shields, he was annoyed at himself for letting them crack just a little.

The briefing hadn't been all that detailed or long -runaways were going missing, and through some digging, the people at Regiment figured out the runaways were supers. But no bodies were showing up, which raised more flags. They'd tapped out all of Crystal's energy to track down some of them in the Chicago area, he supposed asking any telepath to scan an entire city would take a lot out of them, he was just glad no one had thought he'd be up for that. Crystal had gone diamond two seconds after shooting the location of the warehouse into the whole teams head and then she just walked off, telling Handler Hunter she needed space.

Given the size of the city, the runaways, it was kind of easy to figure out what Crystal might've seen in those scans.

The warehouse was a labyrinth though, not just upper levels, but something have been dug out underneath, somewhat shoddy and definitely not up to code, but it was built, likely by a super, maybe to hide away from people. Cole had been feeling apprehensive since they landed, not just about the mission, but because he was out with Wren. He supposed if he had to be used on a mission with any one from his past, Wren was the best choice. He couldn't trust himself not to snark at the others, but he felt Wren's ache from perfectly placed barbs so much clearer since their mental connection was a little more two sided given her approval.

Jade was the agent in charge on the ground, prepared to teleport everyone out when they got there, or to take small groups as needed. Ethan, apparently, could step in on that too at times and help the load while Cerise was there to try and give them cover from any cameras or whoever might be taking these kids. He was the mental punch and Wren was there for the additional one-two punch of combat powers. He could tell they all had some second thoughts about the mission -Ethan and Jade seemed less keen to go into the labyrinth, which he shared because tight spaces and underground sucked, Cerise seemed to be battling against bringing these kids into a situation like Regiment while also aware that they could be in danger where they were and Wren was just a bundle of nerves, anxiety and worry. He tried to calm that, actually grabbing her finger tips with his own to catch her attention and give her a shaky smile.

The second they got to the foot of the stairs in the labyrinth though, his ability to comfort anyone was shot to hell. He felt twitchy and scared, the coiling of tension in his shoulders mounting dramatically with every step they took. It looked like Cerise and Wren felt the same, the way their footsteps sometimes faltered a little, like they had to push themselves to keep going. So, thinking it might help, Cole created a tentative link between the five of them. He got a quick glance from Jade and Ethan, and he shrugged lightly, "In case we get lost." He wasn't reading any thoughts, he was just making sure they all had a thread to follow if something went wrong.

Because it felt like everything was going to go wrong.

It felt like hours in the maze, trying to feel out of people in the caverns was hard, but he could direct in the general area he felt psychic signatures coming from, even though they were disorientated and didn't make sense. Like they were all over the place, or they were panicking, and he couldn't tell why. It felt like they were all in the one place, and for a second, he pushed further into a mind that seemed a little more catatonic than the others, just seeing a large gated room with mattresses on the floor, dozens of people laid out, whimpering and crying, curling in on themselves.

He flinched back from that vision, almost pulling all his telepathy in on himself for protection.

"Cole?" He wasn't surprised by Wren's hand on his shoulder, or the way she was already half hugging him while he tried to clear the aching out of his head. "Are you okay? What was that?"

"They're all together, a few more turns, maybe... Right then left then the third right." It was easier to tell where to go, which should've been a sign, really, but they were too focused on getting to the kids to think past why it would suddenly be easy to tell where they were. Ethan went first, far more combat trained, with Cerise taking up after him, since she'd take some power from one of her friends before they left -which was partially why Cole kept confusing her consciousness with a males- while Jade checked on him and Wren before getting them to follow on.

"You sure you're okay?" He didn't want to say that he wasn't, that it felt like being 16 and scared again, that he was sure he'd heard his dad's voice when he was in there, because it sounded crazy. He knew his dad wasn't a super, neither was his mom and for all he knew, his dad had drunk himself to death already.

But it felt so real, like he could smell the alcohol laced breath on his neck as he'd stood there, the grip on his arm jarring him out of the mind. "I'm fine." But Wren didn't need to worry more and they were here to get people out. He'd think about telling her later.

And then he wasn't sure if later would even come. Getting separated wasn't part of anyone's plan, and he wasn't sure how anyone could've gone the wrong way, he'd been clear, but when they got to the third right, there was no one there. He couldn't even sense Jade and Ethan and Cerise anymore. And as he went to grip to Wren's fingers, she was very suddenly gone too. "Wren?" It echoed around him, rattling down the halls in the labyrinth, chasing away into the darkness. It felt oddly cold, and there was a draft, coming from somewhere. He didn't really want to follow it, knowing it could just be a trap, but he didn't feel like there was an option, given that he couldn't get lost in here. He thought, for a second, about using his telekinesis, but that might just bring the whole thing down around their heads.

Following the draft, the breeze of stale and damp air, Cole stepped into a room. Not a large room, not the one he'd seen, but a small room, a living room. And in an instant he recognised the armchair, and the off centre TV screen, the stained carpet. His living room. He was at home. The confusion melted into fear when he felt the whisky breath on his neck again, just as a hand grabbed his arm and spun him around.

It's not real, it can't be real, it's not real.

He knew it couldn't be real, something was wrong, something wasn't right. It took him a moment to work out that his dad didn't have a face, it was just a blur of where the face should be, none of the details in the room were staying in place, changing subtly as Cole remembered more details about his childhood home, but his dad, he was still just a blur with whisky. Get out. Crystal had taught him how to force out other minds, how to block any psychic intrusion, by rebuilding walls, confronting the foreign mind and getting it out. It happened very suddenly, instantly he could feel the jerk of an entity leaving his mind, just as his own awareness came back, and Cole was standing in the middle of the gated room, watching the kids whimper and cry through his own eyes.

"Fear. It's making us live our fears." Ethan just looked frozen, and Cerise was huddled in on herself, muttering about not touching her while Cole could almost feel the anguish from Jade -Ruby, she's seeing something about Ruby-, and Wren... she was on her knees, sobbing and flinching from ...

Stella.

He gathered what he could, and sent a quick shock into Ethan, Jade and Cerise's minds, pulling them from the illusion towards reality, seeing them jerk out of things, leaving them to work through it for a moment he huddled down at Wren's side.

"Wren, hey, c'mon, she's not real. It's not real." It stood to reason that Stella would be Wren's biggest fear, he'd expected something of her parents, but maybe time had helped her deal with their expectations and what they thought their daughter should be. But Stella, Stella was a scab they all had, one that they seemed to keep picking at, letting it bleed and scar a little more. It wasn't like Stella could ever forgive them, so they couldn't forgive themselves.

"Is she..." Jade's still a little unsteady, wiping at her face.

"I've got her, you guys get the kids." He has to take her by the shoulders, practically submerging his mind into hers, something he hadn't done since Prudence, but if it helped pull Wren out of this. She's in Detroit, and he can kind of make out the others, but they're blurry, like his dad was, Van and Alec and Lee, standing back, while a bloody and messy Stella points the finger at Wren, who has handcuffs on, like she's being sentenced. He steps away from where the others are, forcing the illusion to shift, removing the handcuffs and taking away Stella's bloody and harrassed appearance -she hadn't looked like that, in the aftermath, but it wasn't like Wren would know that, her mind just made it look what she most feared.

"Wren, look at me," he had to tip her chin up to him, pulling her away from bowing on the ground, submissive and afraid, "I don't blame you, it wasn't your fault, okay?" He wasn't sure if he fully believed the words, but he knew she needed to hear them, rather than the diatribe of blame and anger the illusion was feeding her. "You didn't mean it, it was an accident, it's not your fault." She started to look at him, tear soaked face and everything, like he was talking Latin to her. "I don't blame you." When she wasn't just as deep into it, when Cole could start to make out the edges of the fear that was being made real in her head, he could pull them out, watch Wren start to see the real room, start to realise she wasn't there, it wasn't real.

In what he was sure was a stupid move, Cole traced a thread from one of the kids, finding the mind influencing them, and in something he could only really think of as protective fury, since Wren was sobbing on his shoulder, telling him she was sorry, he send the strongest psionic bolt he could build up right into that mind.

The result was instant, all the kids started to come around, the ones Jade hadn't already ported out being a little scared until Cerise and Ethan got it under control. If they bitched him out later, he'd blame nerves, call it an accident, but it wasn't a death he was going to feel bad about, considering the nearly two dozen kids that looked terrified and grimy, and Wren still shaking.

"Did you mean it?" Her voice is nearly a whisper, and he almost only feels it against his neck.

"Yeah." He might not have meant it when he said it, but he's surprised to find he does mean it now, "I don't blame you." He's not sure if he ever fully blamed her, maybe was just annoyed with her, for how she went about it, losing her temper, when she was always the reliable one. It was an automatic thing, to place a kiss on her forehead, even as Wren sniffled through the uncertainty.

As Jade teleported the last group out, Ethan and Cerise sweeping the room for anyone else, Cole and Wren still kneeling on the ground, she tilted her head up towards him, looking a little more relieved than he'd seen her in a long time.

It was just second nature to kiss her lips that time.

Infiltration Method

Time with the Regiment certainly hadn't made Jett any more enthusiastic about missions, or the prospect of them. And while there had been a few missions in the last few years where they were later revealed to be a test, it was hard to work out what ones were tests and when they weren't. He guessed that was kind of the point of things -make sure they were ready, for any eventuality.

And he was very much aware that this was one of Avery's first outings without Theo. She'd been on a few missions, rare but true, but she'd tended to always have Theo with her. And he really hoped this was a test, that the whole thing was built around seeing how Avery did without Theo as her back up, but he was a little too hesitant to trust in that. Especially when they lost comms with the Handler and the two of them were cut off from the rest of the team, again a huge problem, since Clara was with them and she was their way out.

Just the whole thing set Jett's teeth on edge -with Clara and Avery in the field, the least practised of them all and the most likely to suffer if something really went wrong, with Beau to lead them, and Jett didn't know the man terribly well, but he was a little less able to handle Clara's skittishness (despite their apparent familiarity) and Avery's hesitance to cause damage, along with their obvious tactical offense with Simon, who at current Jett wasn't sure where the guy was, if he was with Beau and Clara or if they were going to need to search this place for the firestarter.

"This is a nightmare." And it was. Jett was sure this was some kind of joke, some kind of cosmic hilarity that reminded him his luck was the exact opposite of Dani's.

"It's okay, we're gonna get outta here and find the others and get back to base and just... hope to God they don't think we need a redo over." Please let it be a test, one that could at least give lessons on what the fuck not to do.

"We're trapped in a closet, Jett." And Avery wasn't quite to the panicking stages, but he knew this was hard on her. There were injuries she wanted to heal, and he wasn't sure if it was still a throw back from whatever had happened, but she constantly hesitated to touch anyone right now, even when he'd grabbed her hand to pull her into the room they were currently ducked into, waiting out a passing of security.

"We're not trapped, we're just waiting," and he knew it was a very bad idea to leave himself at all vulnerable at the moment, he'd learned what happened when his dupes got hurt, when one died, but the alternative was a very dead them, and he could take the blow back from a dying dupe over that. "We're just waiting for that to pass, then one of me is going to go find Beau and Clara, hopefully they have Simon, we're going to get to that medical bay, we're going to complete the mission and then we're going to get the hell out of here." Although, if he were honest, he's not just as concerned about the mission anymore.

"I can't. I can't do this. I can't be--" Avery just starts shaking her head, arms hugging herself as she clearly feels the pressure mounting up. Jett hears the hallway clear, spawning two duplicates in quick succession. One is sent off after Beau and Clara and Simon, sent to the last place they'd been together and hopefully finding them on the way, while the other is to head towards the medical area first, try and clear the way.

If he can create a clear path for him and Avery to get there, let her do what they want her here to do, and then get out, then that'll make things easier. Once both the duplicates are on their way, their objectives clear and Jett just hoping he's trained enough to be able to let them go off on their own like this, his attention goes back to Avery.

"Listen, you are doing great," his hands rest on her shoulders, stroking lightly to off some support, "you're holding it together, you're doing fine. We just need to get out there, get to the medical wing, we'll make it, okay? I know I'm not Theo," nowhere near it, and he wondered if there'd ever be a time he had the narrow minded focus that man had when it came to missions, or if his emotions and bad luck were going to follow him all the way through this forced career. "But I will not let anything happen. Not to you, not to me. We're getting through this."

Because the thing about Avery was that it wasn't her she was worried about, not just that. He figured that out the second she healed his head wound, right in the middle of the mission, when she should be saving her strength for whatever was ahead of them. But he'd been bleeding into his eyes and she'd healed him rather than think about herself. So while he knew she was just as worried about not being able to help him, he was far more concerned with making sure she made it through this without more emotional trauma. And that sort of meant not dying himself.

"Okay?" He waits for the response, a shaky nod of her head, before he returns it, giving her shoulders a squeeze. Turning to the door, Jett gets it open, poking his head out first. It looks like the coast is clear, and he doesn't think twice about taking Avery's hand to lead her along with him.

His dupe has done well, he can see a few bullet holes in the walls, but there's no blood and there's no searing mental agony to indicate that his clone got himself killed while carrying out his part of the mission. There are two security guards tied up with what looks like duct tape, back to back on the floor, wriggling around. One has a massive bruise on his head while the other has a little smear of blood at his cheek. They don't look too pleased to see him and Avery, trying to yell past the tape around their mouths. Jett has to grip Avery's hand tighter to pull her past them, since she seems to want to reach out and heal them anyway.

The medbay is clear of any hostiles, just his dupe sitting on a gurney, bloody smear at his temple and a cocky grin on his face. Jett shakes his head and absorbs it before Avery can get it into her head to heal that wound up too, it vanishes as he absorbs the clone, feeling the memories slot into his mind, what the clone got up to and how he ended up where while Avery and he made their way later. "So, let's find out what we're here for."

There's a locked off section of the room, highly secured really, from the outside to keep something or someone in, and they're both hesitant about opening the door. Which turns out to be harder than initially thought, and Jett realises this is maybe what Beau or Clara were meant to do, get the door open either with a doorway of their own, or Beau manipulating whatever density he could to get them through here. But without them, and losing the luxury of waiting, they need another way in. Biting the bullet, Jett heaved a sigh as he started to strip.

"Um, what... why are..." He doesn't mean to fluster Avery, pulling his shirt over his head and laying it beside the rest of the gear he's gotten off before starting on the boots.

"Well, I don't fancy having to wear scrubs on the way out of here. Don't worry, I don't need to put too much into it, but you should probably get yourself to the corner and duck down." He vehemently disliked doing this in situations that he couldn't fully control, but he'd already worked out most of his energy, and the duplicates from before meant he at least understood how much energy he had left. A small explosion was all it would take, and if he could make sure Avery was far enough away, it would work out just fine.

Hands pressed to the door, Jett took a breath before building up a small detonation and releasing it, feeling his entire being just tear apart in the explosion. He's never sure how long it takes him to come back afterwards, but when he does pull himself back together, a little to the left of where he'd been, he turns to see Avery, finding her not in the corner is a small panic, until he hears her inside the room, comforting someone. Grabbing his clothes, he's shoving his feet into his boots as he fastens his pants and heads into the room, finding Avery hovering over a very out of it Ash, who is clearly not healing on her own.

"Help me get these things off her." Jett ignores tugging on his shirt in favour of getting the remaining IVs and bonds off Ash, disabling the machines attached to her when Avery gave the nod, nothing life threatening then. They can't work out what it is that they've given Ash to stop her healing, but she can't shift either, so it's likely they've dosed her with something that blocks her powers. Avery doesn't hesitate in healing Ash, the wounds closing up near instantly, although Ash is still rather weak and can't use her powers, she doesn't have the wounds covering her blue scales anymore.

They're left waiting an agonising length of time for the others to arrive, led by Simon with the others at the flank, Jett's duplicate giving Clara's shoulders a small hug before moving in for the quick merging with the original and they were bundling Ash up for Clara's door way out and then towards the collection point. It was a near whirlwind in getting back to base, since everyone had thought Ash had just been transferred out, rather than lost on a mission for the Texas branch, Jett wasn't surprised that Avery skipped the debriefing to wait in the infirmary with Ash.

He'd decided to stop by, check on them both, after he'd appeased his sister and his handler to assure them both he was fine, not surprised in the least to find Avery hovering over the shapeshifters bed. "Hey," he kept his voice down, since Ash looked like she needed the rest, "how's everyone doing?" Supposedly, whatever facility they'd rescued Ash from had been attempting to modernise science with a little help. Using an Evo with healing properties to do it.

"Good, we're good. Ash's powers are starting to come back now we've got her off the medications and her energy should be back to normal soon." Avery still looks wired, like she hasn't slept in days, despite them being out and back within two days and the debriefs only taking up a few hours. "Hey listen," Avery grabs his hand, tugging them a little away from Ash's bed, the infirmary is quite, peaceful, for once it seems. Pushing some loose hair behind her ear, Avery bites on her lip before taking a breath, "I know I'm not the easiest person to be stuck with on a mission," he kind of hates how she words that, but she doesn't let him interrupt, "but you managed to keep me calm and focused, even when you started to-- nevermind. What I'm trying to say is thank you, because of you I got to save my friend, and not freak out during a mission." It's a little bit surprising when she leans up, giving him a quick peck on the edge of his mouth, and he thinks she was torn between that and the cheek, but the small smirk on his face and her blush makes him hold back from commenting.

"Don't tell Cleo." Avery ducks off, hiding her face as she escapes back to Ash and Jett decides to give her some peace, for now.

Fever High

As far as bad ideas go, Orla's fairly certain this one takes the cake.

Throwing a party on the base is something they do with a regularity that is bordering on obsessive. Something happens? They have a party. Things are too quiet? They have a party. Blowing off steam? Party. Being bored? Party. It's something none of the handlers appear to have a problem with and most of the agents just accept at this point.

Whoever thought it'd be a good idea to get the pheromone manipulators high? That was the bad idea.

She spares a moment to wonder if the other empaths on the base are feeling this too, but then Warren's mouth is on her neck and Orla's thoughts stutter to a stop again. They'd just been enjoying the party, and there'd been nothing weird at all, some karaoke, lots of cake, drink like usual and video games to blow each other up in without too much concern for property damage. And then someone slid a plate of brownies down and Orla knew Kelly had eaten some, she was pretty sure she'd seen Isaac sitting with a bowl hugged to him while he munched away, watching Carter blue shell Olive in Mario Kart.

After that is when things get hazy. Around about the time Kelly was sitting in a bean bag giggling, Orla started to feel the shift, trying to remove herself from the way of the heightening emotions, but it was too late by then because everyone was soaked in lazy, hazy pheromones. At least it wasn't anger, or annoyance or anything dangerous, just a low thrum of contentment with an edge of drunken arousal. She couldn't even say if Kelly and Isaac knew what they were doing, just that the feedback loop had Orla half wound up before Warren had even come to check on her.

She felt a little bad about that too, he'd just been asking if she were okay, probably because her hair had already started to react to her wound up emotions and the thrum of desire that was building up. And then Warren, sweet, attractive, Warren took her wrist to just ask her if things were okay and she nearly collided with his face. She definitely wasn't getting points for being smooth, not in the least. Her hair was more coordinated than her hands though, pulling him in close, their chests pressing together while she got herself together and found a little more direction in pressing her mouth to his.

"Orla," she could feel his hand squeezing on her hips, half pulling her in, half stopping himself, before she just shook her head.

"I'm fine, just amped up. Promise." Because the pheromones wouldn't make her do anything she didn't want, and the emotions couldn't control her, just urge her other instincts along. Like a hit of pure adrenaline encouraging to jump off that bridge, take the leap, dive in. And if she were being very honest, she'd been wanting to dive in for weeks.

It seemed to be all Warren needed to know, as those hands gave one more squeeze before he wrapped them around her waist, pulling her all the more closer and sealing their mouths together again. Orla's moan rattled in both their chests, her hands stroking his skull as her hair sought out a little privacy, pulling them both into a vacant room. Warren had her up against the door as it closed, fingers sliding under her shirt to stroke along her ribcage, Orla tugging at Warren's shirt, coaxing it over his head and off, as Warren's mouth ducked down to bite at her neck, Orla's head tilting back to hit against the door as she arched into it, groaning loudly.

She knew it wouldn't have happened without the push, the feelings and the pheromones, and the feedback loop was still there, other people feeling blissed out and handsy and aroused, spurning her further on. She half expected that at least one handler would descend on the party to hose them down and stop a base wide orgy happening, but her hair was starting to undo Warren's pants now, and she didn't think she wanted to stop even if she was kick started into it.

Not with the warm expanse of Warren's back at her fingertips, or the way his teeth nipped at her skin and his tongue followed to sooth, not with the building of heat in her belly every time his hips flexed against her. She just wished she had better leverage, wished she had somewhere to get him spread out to enjoy, more space, a flat surface, a bed. Somewhere. All she could really do right then was hook her leg over his hip, pull him in towards her and push her groin into his.

The stutter in his hips, the muffled groan into her neck, it almost made it worth just that, even as she pushed her hands down the back of his jeans, encouraging him to keep it up. Warren grinned at her as he kissed her again, hand moving up to cup her breast through her bra, tugging it down to stroke his thumb over the warm flesh. It was her turn to groan into his mouth, breaking into a sigh as her top was swiftly unbuttoned and pushed away too, joining Warren's on the floor of whatever room they were currently in.

With their practically bare chests pressed together, tongues finding one another in a duel, Warren curled a hand under her thigh, holding her leg close to him as he found a slow but firm pace to grind into her, causing sparks to dance through both of them. She was far too old to be rutting against someone in a dark room, but the mere notion of stopping made her skin itch. She hadn't been that aroused in a fair long while, and Warren seemed to know all the right buttons to push, the right way to kiss her, deep and lingering, the right pace to set for things, rushing nothing but with plenty of intent, leaving her nerves on fire with every passing sweep of his hand or press of his body to hers.

Her head was cloudy, full of heavy attraction and arousal, desire leaving a sheen of sweat on the both of them, her hair drawing back to just pet at both of them while her hands continued their wandering, constantly drawn back to gripping Warren's ass. "Orla," it's breathed into her ear, a nip at her lobe as his hips push into hers, sparks flaring from the contact as she tried to grind back against him, almost sobbing as he pulls back before returning.

"Fuck, Warren, please." She's not sure what she needs but she definitely needs something, so it's a little surprising when Warren grabs behind her knee, pulling her off her feet and pinning her to the door with his body. It spreads her legs over his hips, as he moves in and she can feel the straining hardness right between her thighs, their pants all that keeps them from completely shaking off any modesty. She loathes her pants in that single moment, until Warren rolls his hips into her and she gasps, fingers scrabbling to hold onto something and nearly scratching his back.

"Oh fuck," it's the perfect line up, and Warren starts a pace that has her moaning so loud she's sure someone outside will hear them. His breath is cool over her chest as he pants and grunts from the work, Orla gathering enough of her wits to shake off her bra, leaving them both naked from the waist up. Kisses are littered over her chest, and Orla finds the rhythm, undulating her hips in time with Warren, meeting his thrusts against her with her own and spurning deeper groans from him.

She can feel her climax building, growing with every press of him against her, the nerves on fire from the friction of him rubbing into her against her clothes. She can't remember the last time she'd got off on frottage alone, but it definitely leaves an impression this time. Her legs trying to close around Warren's hips, pulling him closer as she loses the rhythm but happily encourages him to keep going, even with the sparks going off in her body and her sensitivity quickly rising.

When Warren hits the precipice, she can feel it, not just through his cascading emotions, but his shoulders tense up, his thrusts turn shaky and uncoordinated and she feels herself start to lower. Her hair stops either of them from having to move, creating a perch for them as Warren finds his own climax, face buried in Orla's neck as he groans against her heated skin.

It's nothing to stay there for a moment, her hands stroking over his shoulders and petting at the back of his head, held up as he leaned against her and her hair supported them, letting them catch their breath. Warren pulls back marginally as he gathers himself, Orla not feeling just as desperate and hurried as he leans in for a far softer kiss, lingering and light, full of promises. "How about we grab our clothes and head upstairs," she feels a shiver at how deep and gravelly his voice is, heavy with lust and desire, eyes dark and promising. "Maybe find a bed and get out of our pants?"

It might've taken some pheromones and an overload of emotions to get her there, but Orla doesn't need help carrying on down the path. "That sounds like an excellent plan." Because dear God, she wanted to feel all of him, without the clothes in the way.

Burning Love

There's a lot to be said for 'thank god we're alive' sex. It's right up there with 'dear God, I almost lost you' sex and 'holy shit, how did we pull that off' sex. Jett's fairly certain that missions, training and Holly leaving for any reason, or indeed, him being sent off, is just the prelude for some of the best sex of their lives.

He likes those mornings when things are lazy and loose and they can just relax, take their time, enjoy things. Savouring the moment was something they didn't get to do a lot. In the year they'd been doing this, there'd been the fair share of all kinds of sex -rushed, slow, adrenaline high, sneaky, tension relieving, near death, scared, even the exceptionally tender time they'd been sure Holly was going to die and Jett had been near devastated at the mere prospect of it.

Things hadn't started out serious at all, although they were in no way just having sex for the sake of it, it complicated too much for them to just be messing around. But at the time, neither had been particularly emotionally invested in something serious. Cleo had just been transferred to Florida, which sucked, but they'd always known it could happen, and following Chloe's transfer to Maine, Scott had opted to request the same, one Deacon handler and one Deacon agent at a base to watch the other.

A few months after the transfers, Holly and he had been on a mission together which took a little turn for the worse, nothing they couldn't salvage, but it was an exceptionally high tension mission. One that forged a bond, a deeper one than just handler and agent. Jett knew that Scott and Holly had been exceptionally serious, like almost married serious, and while he and Cleo hadn't gotten to the point of speaking it, he knew he'd been starting to fall in love with her, if he hadn't already. So someone to help through the long nights and the stressful moments? It wasn't too bad an idea. He'd already been moved off her team when a few younger agents who needed the sort of help Holly could provide them had come to the base.

Falling into bed together took a few more months, but from there it just felt natural to let things progress. When Jett went on a mission, he knew that Holly would find him after dark. When she went on a mission, she made a point on letting him know when she was back, and leaving her door on the handler's floor unlocked for him to let himself in that night. It was a pattern no one questioned.

And when they were both on the mission? Sometimes it was difficult to keep his hands to himself, to stop himself from checking for sure she was there and complete and warm. And when things were risky or dangerous or something went wrong? Like today's mission? It wasn't a question of being able to get back to her room -because it was closest. They'd made it through the briefing, but his eyes kept catching hers, and he knew that there was no way they were getting all the way to a room before he'd break. He was right, they barely made it to the barrack building before they were colliding with each other, Holly's arms around his neck as she hopped up, legs going around his waist as he pushed up against the nearest wall, hands sliding to cup her ass to support her while they moaned into each others mouths.

He loved the way Holly kissed, sinking into it like submerging into pure heat, the way she teased sometimes, light kisses and drawing back any time he tried to deepen things. But nothing like that this time. Her mouth closed over his with determination and intent, the rush of making it off the mission, getting through the briefing just culminating in a broken dam as the crashed into each other.

The ding of the elevator opening for them had him backing up from the wall, not putting Holly down or pulling away as he got them inside, almost slamming her up against the elevator wall. Holly had to find the buttons for the floor, Jett's mouth finding her throat at the same moment he got a hand between them, pressing between Holly's legs with purpose. Her back arched away from the wall, pressing back into Jett's hand, his thumb finding just the right place to apply pressure, rubbing through Holly's jeans, right along the seam as she started to rut back against him, nails digging into the back of his neck. They weren't so much kissing anymore as much as breathing into each other's mouths, Jett swallowing the gasps from Holly's mouth as he brought her off, hard and fast with precision.

Her body shuddered and fell into Jett, braced against his shoulders just as the doors started to close on their floor, the elevator having arrived sometime while they'd been occupied.

Thankfully, no one was around as Jett got them out of the elevator, Holly's legs still wrapped around his hips, slightly looser, her arms draped over his neck and shoulders while she littered lazy kisses along his jaw. Getting them into her room was a feat of coordination and luck, Holly slipping from Jett's body, hands tugging at his clothes while she pulled them inside, legs a little shaky as the circulation came back to her limbs. His shirt is tossed aside, Holly ignoring the mess to stroke her fingers over the burn along his ribcage, still somewhat sooty and red, but nothing serious. Cupping her jaw, Jett tilted her upwards as he leaned the short distance, the kiss less hurried, but just as intent. Injuries happened, and while they routinely blamed themselves if they could've stopped it, there wasn't really anything that could be done about it.

They're still very reverent as the strip one another. Jett's long fingers trailing over Holly's warm skin as inch by inch it's exposed, Holly finding old and new bruises with her mouth. His breath catches in a groan as her hand dips below his waistband, knowing fingers teasing along his length before her hand curled around him, her seductive smirk as she squeezed just so sparking another groan. He's pressed back against her desk, legs spread to accommodate her pressing between them, hand stroking a slow, deliberate pace while his arms strain and flex to support his weight, Holly dipping low to trail her tongue up his chest, biting at his peck, well below his collar line, just in case.

She knew exactly how to drive him crazy, where to touch, where to avoid, when to trail light teasing fingers up his ribcage just so, when to use her nails, when to tighten and loosen her grip. He can't help but flex up into her grasp, chasing the sensation, vying for the promising release as his muscles all clench and relax in spasms. "Holly," it's half a plea and half a curse, just as she twists her hand and bites his lower lip, pulling him right over the edge with a yell.

They found out the dangerous way that the handlers floor had exceptional soundproofing.

The remaining clothes were very quickly shed, Holly falling into bed just as Jett followed, blanketing her body with his own. It was easy to slow things down from there, both of them losing the desperate edge, able to slow down and enjoy one another. Jett's more than content to lay worship to Holly's body, kissing along her throat, fingers running over her skin, stroking her ribs to her breasts, caressing them adoringly as her legs draw up, framing his hips. Their kisses turn from slow and exploratory to needy and breathless quickly though, the still lingering need for more, for a deeper affirmation cloying at the back of their minds.

It takes very little for them to get there, Holly's nails digging into his hips, Jett straining above her as they merge, seeking that elusive high of endorphins and release. Jett knows she's close when her back almost bows, one hand gripping the back of his head and pulling him to her, Holly's mouth pressing gracelessly to his, just about contact and muffling her cries, he kisses her through her climax, as her muscles grip him in heat and he follows over the edge with a sigh of her name into her mouth.

He's careful not to crush her, but they both need the moment, his elbows keeping him from entirely crushing her, Holly's legs tangling into his, her hips still rubbing against his where they're joined, arms wrapped around his shoulders. Their heartbeats are just a little out of sync, thumping loudly in Jett's ears while Holly's mouth drops soft kisses along his jaw. He drops his own to her shoulder, moving towards her neck before they both meet, soft and tender, a sigh of breath between them as the wrap up under the covers to rest for a while.

Trapped

Foreign bases were the worst places to be stuck, the worst places to get cut off from the others in. Hazel technically wasn't meant to run missions that included Dani, not since their circling of each other came to a head and the ended up stepping past sexual-tension and flirting and went right to solving that tension in the most satisfying manner possible. And Hazel understood that very well, she knew why she shouldn't be in charge of Dani on missions and she accepted that. But when Mike had gone missing, when his comm went dark and Indigo was told she couldn't go after him, Hazel wasn't accepting any interference in her bringing her partner back.

Dani and her probability manipulation offered them a little bit of extra luck, which had gone a little sideways on the way out, but since Hazel knew that Mike was safely being extracted while she and Dani got the guards distracted? It wasn't exactly a huge worry for her. If Dani just needed a few minutes to collect herself, a little time to build her energy back up to get them to the door, so be it. Only Hazel had misjudged the size of the storage room she'd pulled them into while she'd tossed the smoke bomb, hoping that no one thought they'd be stupid enough to hide in a storage box, since it was barely a room, she just needed to let the coast clear for them to get out or for Jade to portal back in for them.

The lack of space made her very grateful that they had dealt with the tension already, since Dani was pressed against a tiny sink, Hazel squeezed in to stand in front of her, her back pressed to the door with no space to move, their legs having the slot between each other just so they had the space to both be there. "This is cosy." It says something about the size of it when Dani's whisper causes her breath to huff against Hazel's cheek, the loose tendrils of her hair blowing just a little from the air.

It's in no way comfortable, Hazel has the handle of the door pressing into her back, but she knows that Dani's had to scoot up on the edge of the sink, feet brushing the floor, because her knees are pressing into the white porcelain of the sink and it's less than comfortable for either of them. Shifting doesn't seem to help, and Hazel can hear the noise in the corridor telling her the guards haven't all gone on their way yet, searching around for the agents who broke in. It does still mean they might not have noticed that Mike was gone.

Trying to shuffle a little more, wanting to press her ear to the door, maybe make out words, Hazel hears the soft catch in Dani's throat. She freezes instantly, worry colouring her features in the dark of the room, "Are you hurt?" She needs to lean in a little more, keep her voice low just so that they don't attract attention. Dani shakes her head quickly, but Hazel can make out something that looks like pain on her face, moving again to try and get a look at Dani properly, "You are, what happened?" If Dani caught a bullet or was injured somehow, Hazel didn't care how she had to do it, she'd get the other woman out of there.

"No, really. Not hurt. Not like that." Not like that? What on earth did that mean? Hazel tried to move so that she could check and see for herself, but Dani clenched her thighs around Hazel's leg, stopping her from moving at all. "Really, stop, I just... I need." It's neither the time, nor the place, but Hazel recognises the tone of Dani's voice then in that instant, and realises how they're positioned, the way her leg was brushing.

"Oh," it's barely a word, just a gust of air as Dani's hands clench on the sides of the little sink and she bites her lower lip. Hazel knows she's trying to get control of herself, that she's pulling herself together, nothing else. Because they're both professional, usually. But it's so easy to wrap an arm around Dani's waist and pull her towards the friction instead, Hazel moving in close to share breath with the agent. "Just," she shouldn't be doing this, not only are there so many jokes about being trapped in a closet, but it's so not the time, "be quiet?" And it's not the first time they've had to do that either, keep themselves muffled and quiet.

Hazel wishes they had room for more, for her to get between Dani's legs, for some stripping, but it's risky enough to just indulge in this, nevermind compromising themselves with removed clothing. They have to settle for Hazel rubbing her leg up as Dani jerks her hips down, the younger agent arching back to get more friction, more contact, and Hazel knows she's going to have a bruise on her knee from pressing it up against the sink this hard, but she grips Dani's hips to pull her down, thumb stroking the tiny exposed slither of flesh as she does so.

There's a tiny gasp from Dani before she muffles it, biting at her lip so hard Hazel worries she'll bite through it. A low groan escapes her before Dani's pulling herself forward, hand in Hazel's hair to mash their mouths together. It's a little reminiscent of their first kiss, the needy energy, the burning desire, the sloppiness of it all. But it's just as passionate and heated, just as perfect as Dani's moans drown in Hazel's mouth, chased by their tongues tangling as Dani gives a few shaky jerks before whimpering lightly.

Hazel isn't sure if she's going to need a cold shower after this or if the next half hour will prove that she absolutely needed to follow through on that. What she wants, more than anything, is to get out of here, get Dani back to base and not have to worry about who hears what. And she desperately hopes that the commotion she can hear coming towards them is Jade clearing the hallway so that she can do just that.

Firing Range

Considering the size of the base and how messy things could get between people, Ruby was in no way surprised that people had these huge big relationship meltdowns. Everything was high tension all the time, and while she was totally sure that Lucas was a total asshole -emotionally and mentally speaking, she fully understood the attraction and want to ride him.

She didn't think a lot of people knew about Lucas and Theo's thing. And she got that too, sometimes you wanted things to stay private. And Theo really seemed like the private type. She'd gotten to know him okay while they were team mates, training together or getting pointers from him while working on her fighting. She knew he wasn't overly with the sharing unless he was friendly with people, and she knew he was pretty good friends with Lucas, long before he became an agent too.

So she caught on when they were sleeping together, and she was in no way judging that because everyone was a damn adult and she'd already slept with Lucas anyway -undoubtedly more reckless than Theo doing him. They weren't obvious or anything, but Ruby was observant (read: paranoid) and she paid attention to things. Not to mention she spent a full night in the astral plane, wandering the base and seeing everything that went on. She didn't go looking for anything pervy, she just happened to see someone who shouldn't be leaving a room shirtless and with sex hair leaving said room. And maybe she'd thought about it a time or two. Lucas might be a total dick but he was still attractive and it wasn't like she'd pass up sitting on his face if she could.

And Theo? Jesus, the man was carved from marble or something. And he wasn't an asshole, so Ruby would happily sit on his face and more. So sure, she pictured it a time or two. Who was the catcher, what they were like. Was it all testosterone and biting, or was there something a little less macho about it. Theo didn't seem the kind who needed to prove something, and she knew that Lucas didn't mind someone else being on top. But maybe it was a little different when it wasn't just someone riding his cock.

"Ruby, are you going to shoot the target already?" She knows she's blinking owlishly at the remark, brought back to the here and now, looking at her target, the paper cut out of a man pointing a gun at her, and Theo's pinching the bridge of his nose. She zoned out. She really zoned out. But Theo's standing in for Ash today, because Ash broke her knee in five places on a mission and even she needs a little time to heal up from that. And clearly, Theo didn't expect to be covering for Ash because he's in sweatpants and a nearly threadbare t-shirt and there it is again.

Theo has an amazing physique, and Ruby has no problem with objectifying that and appreciating the work he clearly puts in to maintaining an absolutely slamming bod. Because his sweats ride a little low, and his shirt doesn't meet the top of them when they slide down and she keeps seeing that delicious slice of his hips, the narrow line of muscle dipping below his sweats and fuck if that is not distracting. More so than Ash standing around naked in scales because that leaves nothing to the imagination, but all of this is about Ruby's imagination.

"Um, right. Yeah." She has no idea how long she stood there, not paying attention, and she can feel the slight blush on her cheeks, thank fuck Theo isn't telepathic or she'd be bursting into flames right now. She fires off three shots, hitting the target wide, like way wide, and cursing under her breath. She might not be a great shot, but she's not this bad when Ash is the one with her.

Focus is just so hard, at least focusing on what she's meant to be focusing on.

"Ruby," she's not sure if that's frustration or disappointment in his voice, but Theo's standing right behind her and Ruby feels her back stiffen. "I know you're not this bad." Wow, that's really a compliment. "What's going on?"

"Nothing." It's a quick response, even as she glances back at him over her shoulder, absently glancing down and back up, hoping he's too annoyed at her to notice. She just needs to remember Ash's lessons, since she isn't this bad, and she knows she can at least hit the cut out man.

But Theo isn't backing up, he's not quite in her space, but he's not really giving her room to breath at the moment either. It wasn't like he was imposing, even with his height and the broad shoulders and the muscle mass, he managed to not be insanely intimidating to be around, at least when Ruby wasn't entertaining odd fantasies at least. She can practically feel him breathing behind her, making her shiver lightly. "Ruby," it's definitely not frustration in his voice now, "why are you so distracted?" They've trained together before, he's been teaching her how to fight, he's had her in a damn submission hold that had them exceptionally close all over and she wasn't this bad at staying focused. She is absolutely aware that she's being an idiot.

"I'm not." Yet another lie, because oh boy is she. And it absolutely doesn't help that Theo moves in so close she can feel that threadbare shirt against her back, just where her own t-shirt doesn't connect to her hiphugging jeans, and boy was the cut off top a bad idea today.

"Ruby, I don't need lie detection powers to call bullshit on that." Fuck him being so damn easy to get along with, Ruby feels bad for lying, but she's not about to tell him that she was in the middle of picturing him fucking his sort-of-secret ex. So no, she's not telling him everything, but it's not like she's going to fess up to that. She tries to shrug it off, applying herself to the task at hand, but it's very hard to concentrate when he's right fucking there.

She's probably acting really weird, and she knows she's getting flustered, and if she's honest she could do with a shower and some alone time to get through this. Or maybe she could go and see if she can convince Henry to hook up again, just a nice quicky to get the tension out of her spine.

"C'mon," Theo steps closer again, wrapping his hand around hers and raising the gun, "focus on your target, go through the steps." His hips are in line with hers, just a little higher, and she can feel the heat seeping into her back, Theo's warm hand positioning her own to hold the gun correctly, moving to square off her arms before he drops them to her hips, twisting her properly to stand correctly, using his own body to push her into position. It's impossible to miss her intake in breath, or the way her heart is most definitely hammering in her chest.

She doesn't know if Theo's talking or not, because it's just blood rushing in her ears, and his hands are still resting on her hips, his fingers curling around sharp bones, his thumbs resting just on her bare skin, making goosebumps erupt all up her spine and down her arms. "Are you paying attention?"

How the hell is anyone meant to pay attention to anything with this? His voice low in her ear and every single nerve almost screaming at her. She most definitely isn't paying attention to anything but Theo's body and the small points of contact between them. One of his hands flattens over her hip, stretching to rub over her tummy and that's it, Ruby's mind has checked the fuck out, because he has to know what the fuck he's doing, right? She's already lowering the gun -because it might be loaded with dummy rounds for practice but she could still end up shooting one of them with it and that would really suck, while she leans back.

Theo chuckles in her ear and yes, she knew he had to be aware of what the fuck he was doing, Theo is in no way obtuse or even remotely oblivious to his looks or affect on people, she's sure of it. His hand strokes back and forth on her stomach, other one holding her steady while his chin drops to her shoulder. "This okay?" And while she's a huge fan of checking in, she most definitely does not need that right now.

"More than." His nose brushes against her cheek, the soft puff of breath cooling on her skin just as Theo's hand slips downward, sliding under her pants, over the top of her underwear to cup right between her thighs. Her hips automatically push backwards, rubbing right into those soft sweats, and it's the only thing that's soft between them. Widening her stance, giving a little more space, Ruby gripped to the wrist at her hip, just for something to hold onto while Theo's fingers rubbed at her over her underwear, tentative and teasing while she tried to roll her hips into it, chasing the sensations. She could almost feel the throb of anticipation between her thighs, the way she wanted to clench around him, urge him on, but far too worried he might come to his senses and stop.

Theo added a little more pressure, and Ruby couldn't stop the rolling of her hips, trying to ride his fingers, add more contact, causing her to rub back against the hard press of Theo behind her. She made a point of rubbing her butt right into him, prolonging the contact, enjoying the groan near her ear and the way his grip tightened. She gave a particularly focused rub just as Theo slipped a digit past her underwear, pushing it to the side as his finger sank into her heat. Ruby's groan wasn't dignified, or quiet, shuddering as she pushed into it, whining as Theo stopped her from controlling anything.

"Shit, more, please." She had no problem with rubbing herself off on his hand, because shit his fingers were perfect, long and dexterous, with gun calluses in all the right places. But she absolutely needed more. She was right about Theo not being a dick too, because he gave it to her, pressing another finger inside, just as his other hand stroke up over her shirt, giving her breast a squeeze in passing before her grabbed her chin to pull her head up, twisting down to kiss her.

Ruby was almost seeing stars from that alone, rocking up on her toes, throat pulled long as her mouth dropped open until Theo's, hips flowing in rhythm with Theo's fingers, his thumb moving to stroke at her clit, long fingers curling inside her. It took very little to nudge Ruby over the edge, a few well placed strokes of Theo's fingers and her body was shuddering through orgasm, Theo rocking into her behind hard, arm around her stomach to pull her back before the pair of them were hunched over the gun stall, panting harshly.

"If this is how you teach everyone, no one is going to know how to use a gun at all." She's not surprised at how rough her voice is, or how shaky she feels, but she grins through it as she feels Theo chuckle into her shoulder.

Shower Stalls

No one liked digging graves. The problem was that someone had buried Ozzie when she'd been shot through the heart, tossed into an unmarked grave and left. While the mission was technically a success and the rather feral woman had assured them it would be okay, they weren't going to leave her in the dirt to claw her way out. But they didn't have any telekinetics or earth movers, which meant digging, and then it started raining, because it was Seattle in the spring, of course it started raining.

They'd been slipping in the mud for an hour before Jason found Ozzie, uncovering her hand, and then the three of them were pulling the sodden mud, clumping like clay, off her body to haul her out, trying to wipe her off and clear all her airways so she could revive when she was ready.

Rachel had taken the first shift watching Ozzie, the three of them having driven back to base, ignoring the drying mud and Ozzie's still dead form lying out over Clem's knee. She didn't want to force the revival, aware that her powers and Ozzie's weren't the same. Clem brought the dead back to a form of death, Ozzie resuscitated herself. There was a difference. Rather than trudge up the stairs, Jason had recommended showering in the gym, getting the mud off themselves before heading up, rather than spread dirt and mud everywhere.

It was just nice to get under a hot spray, and Clementine hadn't argue in the least as they both just stood under the hot spray, still dressed at the time, letting the warm water soak into them and take the mud down the drain. There's a lot about this mission to get off their chests, out of their minds, not least of all Ozzie's need to stay behind. If it had been anyone else they wouldn't be bringing back someone who could save themselves, it would be a body, just a body with no hope. Things worked out, but only because Ozzie couldn't really die, as far as anyone was aware.

Eyes closed, Clem stood under the spray, letting the mud and grime wash off her face, hoping it would start to take some of the stress and fear and worry with it. She didn't flinch when Jason moved to start helping her out of her clothes, dragging the jacket off her back, tossing it into a wet heap by the side of the showers, his own following. They each got their boots off, Clem pulling her shirt over her head without thought, she'd noticed as Jason faltered a little. They're not that well acquainted, friendly enough, but mostly just through other people, and for a moment then, she'd considered turning to have her own shower, as private as a shared space could be. At least until Jason tugged his own shirt off, slapping it to the tile floor, and moving to stand under the spray with her, hesitation all but forgotten.

The steam was building in the room, several of the shower heads running to keep them warm, Jason's skin hot to the touch from his powers as he moved into Clem's space. She knew it was a terrible idea, that they both had things to deal with from the mission that they should talk about, that it wasn't going to solve anything. But Jason tipped forward just as Clem arched to meet him, her mouth open in a gasp at the contact, hands clutched to his shoulders while she felt his run over her back sliding up her spine to stroke over her skin, stopping just at the clasp of her bra.

There was a silent question in the way Jason pulled back just slightly, fingers toying with the clasp before Clem gave a wordless, short nod, conveying then that she was more than on board. Jason fiddled with the clasp, just as Clem slid her arms out of the straps and soon another garment joined the rest against the wet tiles on the floor. Nothing is careful, not the gasps from each of them as more clothes are stripped, the slap of discarded clothes to the moans against the echoing tiled walls. There's just heat, steam and a mission neither want to think about for the time being, and comfort in another is the best way to put it out of their mind.

It's in no way easy, shower sex rarely is. Between the lack of grip, the precarious situation and the building steam, there's not a lot to work with. But Jason spins Clem towards the wall, the necromancer gripping uselessly at the tiles while Jason's mouth worked over her neck, his chest pressed solidly to her back, seeping warmth along her spine while the tiles pressed to her chest warmed slowly against her skin. The moment Jason breeches her, hot and solid and hard, Clem's head falls back against his shoulder, the cry somewhere between a moan and a prayer as Jason finds a steady rhythm.

Elbows resting against the tile, Clem dropped her head forward, trying to find leverage to meet Jason's thrusts, just as his head rested at the back of her neck, one hand wrapping around hers against the wall while the other gripped at her hip. It builds quickly, the pressure and need, the tension from the whole mission just culminating in a sheer drive towards finding some kind of release of pressure.

As Clem started to feel the pressure build, one hand reaching back to grab at the back of Jason's head, her hips flexing off rhythm to chase the coil of pleasure in her gut, Jason dropped his hand from her hip, slipping to push her pelvis back against him, fingers catching her clit to heighten the pleasure. The reaction follows swiftly afterwards, Clem's body shaking through the orgasm, her muscles clinging to Jason through the jerky rhythm. Pressing his mouth to her jaw, Jason's orgasm followed just a few moments later, his breath panting against Clem's cheek until they both collapse against the wall, hearts thumping and body's calm for the first time in several hours.

Chapter Five

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Chapter Six

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Chapter Seven

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Chapter Eight

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Chapter Nine

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Chapter 20

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Chapter 21

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Chapter 22

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Chapter 23

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Chapter 24

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Chapter 25

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Chapter 26

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Chapter 27

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Chapter 28

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Chapter 29

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© TESSISAMESS